The Role of Vitamins & Minerals

Main Role
Good Food Source
A(retinol) Needed for maintenance of skin, mucous membranes, bones, teeth, and hair; vision; and reproduction. Sources: green leafy vegetables, melon, squash, yams, tomatoes, fish-liver oils.
D(calciferol) Helps body absorb calcium and phosphorous; needed for bone growth and maintenance fish-liver oils, sprouted seeds, mushrooms, sunflower seeds
E(tocopherol) Helps form red blood cells; prevents oxidation damage. Raw or sprouted seeds, nuts and grains. Green leafy vegetables.Cold pressed olive oil.
K Needed for blood clotting, normal liver function. Kelp, Alfalfa, soybean oil. Naturally present in healthy intestines.
B1(thiamin) Needed for nervous system function;m helps release energy from carbohydrates. Brewer's yeast, wheat germ/bran, whole-grain cereals, seeds and nuts, beans, leafy green vegetables.
B2(riboflavin) Helps release energy from foods. Essential for healthy eyes, skin, nails and hair. Whole grains, brewer's yeast, torula yeast, wheat germ, almonds, sunflower seeds,cooked leafy vegetables.
Niacin(B3) Needed for nervous and digestive system functions;essential for protein and carb metabolism. Brewer's / tortula yeasts, wheat germ, rice bran, nuts, sunflower seeds, brown rice, green vegetables.
B6(pyridoxine) Needed for metabolism; helps form red blood cells. Important for normal reproductive processes and healthy pregnancies. Brewer's yeast, bananas, avocado, wheat germ/bran, soybeans, blackstrap molasses, cantaloupe. Peacans arre especially rich.
B12(cobalamin) Helps form red blood cells.Prevents anemia. Promotes growth in children. Fortified brewer's yeast, sunflower seeds, comfrey leaves, kelp, bananas, peanuts, raw wheat germ.
Folic acid Essential for the formation of red blood cells, the healing process and aids in the meatabolism of proteins and contributes to normal growth. Deep green leafy vegetables, lima beans, spinach, nuts, broccoli,brewer's yeast.
Pantothenic acid Affects all vital body functions.Wards off infections and speeds recovery from illnesses. Royal jelly, whole-grain breads/cereals, green vegetables, peanuts, crude molasses.
Biotin Prevents hair loss, Involved in metabolism of proteins and fats, used in malaria treatments. Brewer's yeast, soybeans, unpolished rice.
(ascorbic acid)
Necessary for healthy teeth, gums and bones. Essential for proper functioning of adrenal and thyroid glands. General detoxicant. All fresh fruits and vegetables.Rich Sources: rose hips, citrus, strawberries, apples, guavas, cabbage, tomatoes, turnip greens, green bell peppers.
Calcium(Ca) Needed for bone and tooth formation; heart function and blood coagulation; muscle contraction. Dark leafy vegetables, sesame seeds, oats, navy beans, almonds, millet, sunflower seeds, canned sardines/salmon.
Phosphorous(P) Works together with calcium and must be balanced to be effective. Needed for building bones and teeth. Whole-grains, seeds, nuts, legumes, dried fruit, corn.
Magnesium(Mg) Needed for healthy muscle tone and healthy bones and heart. A natural tranquilizer. Nuts, soybeans, green leafy vegetables, figs, apples, lemons, peaches, almonds, salmon.
Potassium(K) Important in keeping acid-alkaline balance in the blood. Essential for muscle contraction and normal heart beat. Green leafy vegetables, oranges, whole grains, sunflower seeds, bananas, fresh salmon.
Sodium(Na) Regulates fluid and acid base balance; sodium is necessary for hydrochloric acid production in the stomach. Kelp, celery, romaine lettuce, watermelon, sea salt.
Chlorine(CI) Essential for the production of hydrochloric acid in the stomach.Helps the liver in it's detoxifying activity. Seaweed(kelp), watercress, avocado, chard, tomatoes, cabbage, celery, cucumber, oats.
Sulfur (S) "The Beauty Mineral". Vital for healthy skin, hair and nails. Aids in reducing oxidations Radish, turnip,onions, celery, horseradish, watercress, soybeans, fish.
Iron(Fe) Builds resistance to stress and disease. Essential for the formation of hemoglobin, which carries oxygen from the lungs to every cell of the body Apricots,peaches, bananas, black molasses, prunes, raisins, whole grain cereals, turnip greens, spinach, dry beans, lentils.
Zinc(Zn) Component of enzymes and insulin; aids in wound healing, growth, tissue repair, and sexual development. Wheat bran, pumkin seeds, sunflower seeds, brewer's yeast, onions, oysters, green leafy vegetables.
Iodine(I) Essential in the formation of thyroxin - the thyroid hormone which regulates much of physical and mental activity. Seaweed, swiss chard, turnip greens, garlic, watercress, pineapple, pears, citrus, seafood and fish liver oils.
Copper(Cu) Iron cannot be absrobed without copper.In volved in protein metabolism, in healing processes and in keeping hair's natural color. Same as Iron. Also almonds, peas, beans, green leafy vegetables, whole grain products, prunes, raisins.
Manganese(Mn) Importantly involved in the metabolism of carbs, fats and proteins. Helps to nourish the brain and nerves. Spinach, beets, blueberries, oranges, grapefruit, apricots, kelp, green leafy vegetables.
Fluorine(F) Essential for bone and tooth building. Protects against infections. Excess (as in fluoridated water) causes mottled teeth and can be toxic. Steel-cut oats, sunflower seeds, carrots, garlic, betttops, almonds, sea water and natural hard water.
Chromium(Cr) Integral part of many enzymes and hormones. Important in cholesterol metabolism. Essential for the proper utilisation of sugar. Naturally hard water, whole grain bread, mushrooms, brewer's yeast, cane juice.
Selenium(Se) Has a close metabolic intyerrelationship with vitamin E; An antioxidant. Prevents the damage to hemoglobins. Protects from toxic damage by mercury poisoning. Sea water, brewer's yeast,mushrooms, seafoods, most vegetables.
Molybdenum(Mo) Integral part of certain enzymes, involved inproper carbohydrate metabolism. Guards against copper poisoning. Brown rice, millet, buckwheat, brewer's yeast, legumes and naturally hard water.


Cadidates for Supplements

Even if our diets is balanced and varied, certain conditions or events can put you at risk for a deficiency. Orthodox and natural medecine practitioners do not routinely agree on the benefits of supplements.
However, there is a general consensus that the following have nutrient needs that are less apt to be met through diet alone.

  • Pregnant women and nursing mothers who need larger amounts of many nutrients.
  • The chronically ill who take medications. Dozens of drugs inhibit nutrient absorption or deplete nutrients.
  • Heavy drinkers who may need folic acid, thiamin and other vitamins.
  • Cigarette smokers whose vitamin C levels are often low.
  • Dieterswhose calory intakes may not be sufficient to supply all required nutrients.
  • The elderly who tend to absorb nutrients less efficiently from foods.
  • Those recovering from infection or surgery Supplements may help the body overcome the stress of illness.
  • Vegans (strict vegetarians) who may need vitamin B12.
  • Women of child-bearing age who may need Iron.


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